Injury among male migrant farm workers in South Carolina
McDermott, S.; Lee, C.V.
Journal of Community Health 15(5): 297-305
ISSN/ISBN: 0094-5145 PMID: 2229468 DOI: 10.1007/bf01325137
A record review and interview survey were carried out to determine the impact of injury on the health of male migrant workers in the Ridge area of South Carolina. Thirteen percent of the men's visits to the Rural Migrant Clinic were for injuries. A larger number, sixty percent, of men's visits to the local Emergency Room were due to injuries. Documentation of alcohol and drug use or the circumstances of the injury was more complete on the Emergency Room records than on the Clinic records. Interviews with 116 migrant workers were carried out in the camps during the summers of 1986 and 1987. Male migrant workers had similar rates of work related accidents as other hired farm workers in the United States. However, male migrant workers have more episodes of personal violence than black males living in other types of rural settings. Heavy drinking was associated with these violent episodes. Over 83 percent of the episodes of personal violence occurred in the camps after dark. It is suggested that camp conditions with poor sanitation, crowding, lack of recreational outlets, and high presence of available alcohol contributes to the high rates of injury in this group of men.